Brother and Sisters

It’s been a hectic time for Mom and Dad. There was the anchorage with the million tiny bugs followed by hours of cleaning them up. The engine troubles as we headed up the Chesapeake Bay that ended in one engine going down. Dad’s first docking with a single engine. He did great. The gale warnings that occurred in the midst of said engine troubles. And even an infestation of frogs (OK, one frog) hiding onboard, most likely to eat the remains of the bugs. 

Through it all the crew remained focused on their tasks. Sleeping and having fun. Sisters Dee Dee and Dora cuddled for a nap.

Dora helped brother Dylan keep watch. 
Dylan and Dora found time to play.

The Red Head crew is now settled into Georgetown Yacht Basin. A Caterpillar mechanic was onboard yesterday to not only fix the engine problem but to show Dad how to do it himself should it happen again underway. Today Mom picks up a rental car. Tomorrow we head to a nearby dog park. Next week a Red Head will be hauled for maintenance work but today life is good.

May 22 – Keuka Lake Outlet Trail

“It is never too late to be what you might have been.” ―George Eliot  

There are so many places to explore around this area and it seems like we’re finding new places all the time. Today we drove over to Pen Yan and walked part of the Keuka Lake Outlet Trail. The trail follows an old rail bed; previously a canal towpath (Crooked Lake Canal), that even earlier, was a pioneer dirt trail. The canal is now mostly dismantled or buried, but it can be traced by swampy ditches and crumbling locks. Along the trail you can see old factories and mill foundations. It was fun trying to envision what the area looked like hundreds of years ago.
The Keuka Lake Outlet is a natural waterway that drains the waters of Keuka Lake into Seneca Lake crossing over 8 miles and dropping 280 feet along the way. The first saw and grits mill on the outlet was built in 1790 and over the years there have been 40 mills in operation on the outlet. Now the outlet caters to recreation with a multi-use trail that offers access to the outlet waters. 
Birkett Mills is the only mill that remains on the Keuka Lake Outlet. It’s has been in continual operation since 1797 and today is the world’s largest producer of buckwheat products.
Seneca Mill Falls is the most popular stop along the trail. The falls are a three-tiered cascade that starts as a small dam spillway and then crashes down two large limestone drops into a deep pool. The remains of the paper mill can be seen at the foot of the falls and above the falls you can see the rusty old mechanics that once harnessed the power of the outlet, and was a component of the electrical plant that took over the site after the paper mill left. 

This is a picture of the falls and the Seneca Paper Mill built in 1884

Cascade Mill Falls is about half the size of Seneca Mill Falls, and definitely not the prettiest site, but the complex is made up of old mills, factories and oddities that are in an advanced state of decay. Most notable is the Baker Chemical Company’s carbon bisulfide plant, which resides right next to the falls, and the Kelly Tire building which reconditioned tires and relied on carbon bisulfide for rayon. 

After hiking the Outlet Trail we stopped at the Spotted Duck Creamery for a little reward. This creamery makes their custard using organic local ingredients…much of it comes from their farm. They use duck eggs, enhance the name Spotted Duck. Why ducks…according to the own’s, they “make a far superior custard than chicken eggs; the increased yolk size makes a much richer flavor while the firmer whites are a better suspender, giving our frozen custard it’s signature creamy texture.” The farm was beautiful, the service from Dane was exceptional, the ice cream was very good and the flavors were fun. 

We shared the Hollywood, which was a flight of four flavors….we choice: Raspberry Truffle, Maple Nutt, Emu Tracks and Real Cookies n Cream.


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“Family and friendships are two of the greatest facilitators of happiness.” – John C. Maxwell

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